I have this new RepRap 3D printer that I am putting together. It is based on the Rostock style printer. It came to me half assembled, sans electronics. It had been running, but got pirated for parts to make another Prusa.

It has this awesome, expanding, laser cut acrylic case. But the case was set up to only go ‘normal’ Rostock height based on the length of the belts. There is a lot more room on the smooth rods for it to get taller. I just need to make a belt stretcher (I am too cheap to buy longer belts).

I just so happen to have just the thing. I have some fishing line I picked up on clearance a few years ago – $6. It just so happens to be the 65lb Spectra line that people are using to string up their Kossels.

So I decided to do both. Belts for the drive and line for the ‘idler’ side. I also wanted to include the zip-tie tensioner concept I’d seen.

tools and parts to make copper bushings
Making some little copper rings so the line doesn’t cut my belts. I just nipped off a bit of tube left over from my water-cooling experiment and deburred them.
rostock reprap carrage wtih both belts and Spectra fishing line
Here you can see my belt to carriage connection and also the belt to line connection.
rostock reprap with the carriage to the top of the tower.
The fishing line goes over the top pully. I looped mine a couple of times, giving me a total of 4 strands. 260lbs tensile should reduce the stretch and bouncing other people are seeing with just a single line. The Z endstop provides enough gap to allow for the connection.

It turns out, that doing this, you need a belt as long as your smooth rods. Conversely  you can make your smooth rods as long as your belt.

rostock carriage all the way down.
I can drop the carriage right to the ‘floor’ and still not interfere with the coupling.
Rostock Reprap with both belts and Spectra fishing line drive mechanism.
Two of the three towers belted or strung. I’ve not done the back tower. Each one is getting done slightly different, so I can see which I like the best.
reprap rostock zip tie belt tensioner
This shows the zip tie being used to tension the belts. Just take another click on the zip tie, and it’s tighter. I am wondering how long these things will last before they break and what kind of damage that will incur. I may try bailing wire on the next iteration.



This begs the question. Is this a Rostock or a Kossel? (Looking at the drive, not the smooth rods vs extrusion frame). Rossel? Kostock?

I know I am naming this machine the Solar Scribbler. It will live in my garage workshop for a few reasons.

ABS stinks when printing. I don’t want print ABS in the house again…

The upright rods means that sawdust and crud won’t settle on them near as much. Also the chassis helps keep airborne crud out.

But the garage is getting a few solar panels and some deep cycle batteries installed. So the printer will run on solar power! I figure the deep cycle batteries should be able to power the heated bed to ABS temps without a problem.

My garage also sports a solar hot air panel to heat it fall through spring. The printer will get fitted to the panel to have a solar heated chamber.

So many big plans for this little printer…

Join the Conversation


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

WordPress Appliance - Powered by TurnKey Linux